Watercolors, a dash of acrylic and micron pen. I don't paint often, if at all, so this really isn't my strong point. The idea was stuck in my head and I thought paint would be the best medium for it though.
Random story to match the picture:
On the balmy coasts of an island lost in the sea, lived a star named Aster. However, this was no ordinary star… Aster was a sea star who dreamt of living in the sky. In fact, she hated being called a ‘starfish.’ Fish were scaly, swimming creatures who lived out their lives in the ocean. Aster knew she was something more… She knew her place was way up above, far beyond the waves and the shorebirds, past the clouds and into that other land of swirling blue. The sky was like an ocean, but the stars up there were all glittering, beautiful creatures. Aster, with her bumpy orange skin, longed to be one of them. “And one day I will be!” she told herself.
In fact, many sea stars are dreamers. But the ones who ventured on shore seldom made it back into the water. Being a dreamer was a dangerous thing indeed. Aster was smarter than the rest though, and she only went onto the surface in the dark of night, when the baking sun was fast asleep and all was quiet. There she would sink her arms into the wet sand and lie still, staring at the diamond studded sky and imagining herself there. She wondered if they could see her, if they ever noticed the bumpy, orange star in the sand. By morning she would already be back in the water, and the waves would have washed away all traces of the dreaming star from the land. Aster was determined though, so every night she hauled herself back out. And there she would stay, dreaming and wishing and hoping.
On one such night, Aster noticed a strange shadow creeping across the sand. Frightened, she swished her arms and tried her hardest to return to the sea. But the creature noticed the sudden movement and headed straight towards Aster. It was very large, and much faster than the sea star. “This is the end!” Aster thought, as the shadow drew closer. But just as the creature was nearly upon her, Aster remembered something her grandmother had told her: 'When a sea star dies, her soul flies into the high ocean, the one far beyond the clouds, and she becomes a sky star.' Those words gave her courage, and Aster shouted out as loudly as she could, “You may eat my body now, but you can never touch my soul as it belongs in the sky!”
Mere inches away, the creature stopped.
“Eat you?” said the shadow, “Why would I do such a thing?” It chuckled, and then it tossed its head to the sky and laughed. Relieved, the sea star asked “Who are you?” It drew closer and Aster recognized the creature to be an otter… But not the kind she often saw around here. “My name’s Lutrina,” the otter replied, “I’m a river otter!”
Sea creatures don’t belong in rivers, Aster knew, and river creatures had no business in the sea either. Curious, Aster asked Lutrina, “What are you doing all the way out here?”
A bold smile appeared on the otter’s face as she explained, “It’s always been my dream to explore the oceans. I followed my river past were the land ends and swam until my paws were sore, until I reached this island.” Suddenly, Lutrina tilted her head and gave Aster an inquisitive look. “What are YOU doing here?” the otter asked.
“My name is Aster. I’m a sea star so I belong in the sea,” Aster replied, a bit ashamed. The otter laughed again and said, “Where I come from the stars only live in the sky. I thought you were a star that had fallen out!" Aster blushed and tried to cover herself with her arms. She muttered very quietly, “I wish I was a glittering star like them, but I’m just an ugly orange star in the sea.”
Lutrina gave Aster a surprised look. “No you aren’t!” she shouted, “Why, when I first saw you over here, you should have seen the way you were shining… what with the water on your skin and the moon glowing on you like that… You’re as bright as any star in the sky!”
“…Really?” Aster asked, wishing she could see how bright she was.
Lutrina nodded. “Really really. I’m a river otter swimming through a big wide ocean. And you’re a sea star that ought to shine in the sky!”
“But how?” Aster wondered. As much as she tried, she could never quite reach the oceans above, or sprout wings and fly.
The otter thought for a moment, then replied, “I have an idea!” Gently, she picked Aster up in her mouth and jumped into the water. Aster was surprised at how well Lutrina could swim! Her strong body took the two of them farther from the island, deeper than Aster had ever been. Soon it was so dark that she couldn’t see, and she grew scared. “Trust me,” Lutrina whispered, careful not to drop her new friend.” Then, the otter took a sharp turn upwards and swam as hard as she could. Such speed! The force of the water pushed Aster’s arms back and made her feel like she was flying. And then… Splash!
Aster couldn’t believe it. She WAS flying! She and Lutrina were completely out of the water and up in the air! Beads of water seemed to be suspended around her as she waved her arms. She was so close, the stars twinkled and winked at her. Aster wiggled her body so that the water on her gleamed, and she twinkled back at them. It was only a moment until gravity brought the two splashing back into the water, but to Aster it felt like an eternity. Because tonight, she was truly a sky star.
Sappy? I don't care. I love 'follow your dream' type stories : )